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Procedure descriptions

Unsolicited telephone calls - lodge a complaint

You can report such calls to the competent authorities free of charge.

An advertising call is permissible if you have previously given your express consent to telephone advertising.

To do this, you must have given your consent specifically to telephone advertising offers.

It is not sufficient if the caller asks for your consent only during the telephone call.

Consent you can usually also give your consent by confirming a pre-formulated declaration (e.g. by ticking or signing) if she

  • it is contained in a separate text or
  • Text section without any other content and
  • it is clear from the text of the consent which specific products or services of which companies are to be advertised.

As a rule, consent is invalid if it is

  • is hidden in the general terms and conditions or
  • is linked to further declarations, such as consent to a telephone prize notification.

The calling company may not suppress its telephone number. This also applies to telephone advertising to which you have consented.

Tip: Read the small print carefully and cross out the relevant passages. A already you can revoke your consent at any time for the future.

Even if a contractual relationship exists between you and the calling company, the latter may not call you for advertising purposes without express consent. This also applies to additions, changes and extensions to the existing contract or new offers. Even after you have terminated a contract, the provider may not, as a rule, engage in "follow-up advertising" by making you alternative offers by telephone.



  • The advertising call is made without your consent or
  • the calling company has suppressed its telephone number.


You can submit a complaint to the competent bodies through various channels.

When doing so, you should provide the following information:

  • Your contact details: Address as well as telephone number, fax number or e-mail address, different contact person if necessary
  • Telephone number to which the call was made
  • Name, owner or proprietor of the calling enterprise
  • Telephone number of the company (if this has not been suppressed)
  • Name of the caller
  • Date of the call
  • Time of the call
  • Reason for the call: What was being advertised?
  • possible existence of consent to telephone advertising

The Federal Network Agency and the Wettbewerbszentrale have each prepared their own complaint forms.
If you regionalise on this page, these are available under Forms & Online Services.
However, you can also submit your complaint informally by post, fax or e-mail.

If the company does not stop the advertising calls, you can also take action against the company yourself.



Required documents

In the event of a complaint about unauthorised telephone advertising, the Wettbewerbszentrale additionally requires the submission of a signed affidavit about

  • the day and time of the call,
  • the person making the call,
  • the company for which the call was made,
  • the course of the conversation and
  • the statement that you have not given your consent to telephone advertising to the advertising company.

Then, if necessary, they can quickly obtain an injunction.

The Wettbewerbszentrale provides you with a leaflet on how to make a note of unauthorised telephone calls.


Complaints to the competent bodies are free of charge.

For individual telephone counselling at the consumer advice centre, costs of 1.86 euros per minute from the German fixed network (mobile phone prices differ) may be incurred by you - but only after an appointment has been made.

Personal or written specialist and legal advice as well as e-mail advice:

  • Standard consultation up to 20 minutes: EUR 22.00
  • particularly time-consuming advice: for each additional ten minutes or part thereof: EUR 11.00


The Federal Network Agency takes your complaint, registers it and follows up on actionable tips. If it finds a violation of the law, it can impose a fine of up to 300,000 euros on the calling company as the state supervisory and regulatory authority for the telecommunications sector.
Anyone who violates the ban on number suppression can be fined up to 100,000 euros.

The Federal Network Agency cannot always inform you as a complainant about the course and outcome of the proceedings.

The consumer advice centre and the Wettbewerbszentrale can take civil action against the calling company, for example, by issuing a warning or taking action for an injunction.
Consumers as non-members of the Wettbewerbszentrale are not informed about the status of the proceedings. The Wettbewerbszentrale points out that it must already disclose your name and address or e-mail address in the context of an out-of-court settlement of a dispute.

If you would like to report a company to the Wettbewerbszentrale and do not want an answer or advice, you can do so by e-mail.

If you would like individual advice, you have the choice at the consumer advice centre between

  • personal counselling in one of the local counselling centres,
  • telephone counselling or
  • e-mail counselling with an online input mask.

Attention: The ban on unauthorised telephone advertising does not affect the validity of contracts that may be concluded between you and the calling company in the event of an unsolicited call.
If, in the course of such a telephone call, you agree to order goods or use services, a binding contract may be concluded under certain circumstances.
Contracts agreed by telephone are valid. Therefore, do not enter into any discussion with the caller and hang up.
If a company nevertheless claims that a contract has been concluded as a result of the telephone call, you usually have the right to cancel the contract within 14 days without giving any reasons.
If the company has informed you about your right of withdrawal in accordance with the statutory provisions, this period begins with the receipt of the goods in the case of a purchase contract, and at the time of the conclusion of the contract in the case of a contract for services.
If you were informed later about the right of withdrawal, the start of the period will be postponed accordingly.
If you were not properly informed or not informed at all about your right of withdrawal, the right of withdrawal usually expires one year later than usual - after twelve months and 14 days from receipt of the goods or from conclusion of the contract.

An exception applies to sweepstake services:
Contracts where a company offers to sign you up or register you to participate in sweepstakes conducted by a third party can only be effectively concluded by letter, fax or e-mail (text form).

Even if you have consented to a telephone call, no obligations can arise for you from an agreement by telephone with sweepstake services.

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